The Ground Beneath Us: From the Oldest Cities to the Last Wilderness, What Dirt Tells Us About Who We Are [EPUB]
21 June 2017, 13:22
2017 | EPUB | 25.27MB
Our most compelling resource just might be the ground beneath our feet.
When a teaspoon of soil contains millions of species, and when we pave over the earth on a daily basis, what does that mean for our future? What is the risk to our food supply, the planet's wildlife, the soil on which every life-form depends? How much undeveloped, untrodden ground do we even have left?
Paul Bogard set out to answer these questions in The Ground Beneath Us, and what he discovered is astounding.
From New York (where more than 118,000,000 tons of human development rest on top of Manhattan Island) to Mexico City (which sinks inches each year into the Aztec ruins beneath it), Bogard shows us the weight of our cities' footprints. And as we see hallowed ground coughing up bullets at a Civil War battlefield; long-hidden remains emerging from below the sites of concentration camps; the dangerous, alluring power of fracking; the fragility of the giant redwoods, our planet's oldest living things; the surprises hidden under a Major League ballpark's grass; and the sublime beauty of our few remaining wildest places, one truth becomes blazingly clear: The ground is the easiest resource to forget, and the last we should.
Bogard's The Ground Beneath Us is deeply transporting reading that introduces farmers, geologists, ecologists, cartographers, and others in a quest to understand the importance of something too many of us take for granted: dirt. From growth and life to death and loss, and from the subsurface technologies that run our cities to the dwindling number of idyllic Edens that remain, this is the fascinating story of the ground beneath our feet.
The Wonder of Birds: What They Tell Us About Ourselves, the World, and a Better Future [EPUB]
19 June 2017, 23:41
2017 | EPUB | 11.92MB
A fascinating investigation into the miraculous world of birds and the powerful—and surprising—ways they enrich our lives and sustain the planet
Our relationship to birds is different from our relationship to any other wild creatures. They are found virtually everywhere and we love to watch them, listen to them, keep them as pets, wear their feathers, even converse with them. Birds, Jim Robbins posits, are our most vital connection to nature. They compel us to look to the skies, both literally and metaphorically; draw us out into nature to seek their beauty; and let us experience vicariously what it is like to be weightless. Birds have helped us in so many of our human endeavors: learning to fly, providing clothing and food, and helping us better understand the human brain and body. And they even have much to teach us about being human in the natural world.
This book illuminates qualities unique to birds that demonstrate just how invaluable they are to humankind—both ecologically and spiritually. The wings of turkey buzzards influenced the Wright brothers’ flight design; the chickadee’s song is considered by scientists to be the most sophisticated language in the animal world and a “window into the evolution of our own language and our society”; and the quietly powerful presence of eagles in the disadvantaged neighborhood of Anacostia, in Washington, D.C., proved to be an effective method for rehabilitating the troubled young people placed in charge of their care.
Exploring both cutting-edge scientific research and our oldest cultural beliefs, Robbins moves these astonishing creatures from the background of our lives to the foreground, from the quotidian to the miraculous, showing us that we must fight to save imperiled bird populations and the places they live, for the sake of both the planet and humankind.
Wolf Empire: An Intimate Portrait of a Species [PDF]
10 February 2017, 14:33
2016 | PDF | 251.62MB
From award-winning photographer Scott Ian Barry comes Wolf Empire--the most comprehensive and stunning visual record of wolves ever published in black-and-white photography. In this world of fur and teeth, texture and shape, light and shadow, Barry creates a highly intimate look at wolves and their often mystifying way of life.
Each high-quality photograph is accompanied by a narrative in which Barry relates the circumstances that led to the taking of the photo, or some unique personal observation about wolf behavior gathered from his more than thirty years of experience as a wildlife photographer. His great reverence for these magnificent animals comes through in frame after frame of wolves in varying degrees of harmony and aggression, excitement and tranquility, cooperation and solitude--all part of their experience and essential to their survival. Barry’s photographs show wolves for the individuals they are, a species as diverse as humans.